Click HERE for information on how you can help relief efforts in Nepal.
It's hard to capture how much death and ruin has come to Nepal, but this aerial footage helps.
The official death toll is now over 4,600. That number could rise significantly when we get more information about how the 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit remote areas. In the hard-hit city of Kathmandu, people are sleeping in the streets, many because their homes have been destroyed, others because they're terrified to be indoors during the aftershocks.
New drone footage shows what their world looks like now.
It was shot by Kishor Rana and uploaded to his Facebook page. Some HD versions are now hosted on Storyful's YouTube channel. Rana has shot three videos so far, but he plans to shoot more in the coming days, so key an eye out for them.
Here's what the devastation in Nepal looks like from the sky:
Rana has been delivering on his promise to keep shooting footage of the earthquake destruction. Here are more videos he's posted to Facebook.
Here are the fresh footages from today. All of the revenues generated from the videos I post will be donated to the victims who are in desperate need. Please help share these videos to make a difference in the lives of people who were affected.P.S. Without the assistance from my good friend Sagun Lama these videos would not be possible! Many many thanks to him.
Here are the fresh footages from today. All of the revenues generated from the videos I post will be donated to the victims who are in desperate need. Please help share these videos to make a difference in the lives of people who were affected.P.S. Without the assistance from my good friend Sagun Lama these videos would not be possible! Many many thanks.
This particular area has not gotten any attention at all. Small village completely wiped out. This is approximately 6 KM east of Kathmandu. All of the revenues generated from the videos I post will be donated to the victims who are in desperate need. Please help share these videos to make a difference in the lives of people who were affected.P.S. Without the assistance from my good friend Sagun Lama these videos would not be possible! Many many thanks.
There was a bit of good news on Monday as Turkish rescue workers in Kathmandu pulled a man alive from the rubble:
Some of the Relief Organizations where you can contribute:
The Nepal Red Cross Society is at the center of relief efforts in the devastated country and help is needed.
Its online donation link is here but is experiencing issues with heavy traffic. It is down as of this posting. the American Red Cross is coordinating efforts with them and you can select Nepal Earthquake Relief on its donation page.
Also collecting funds is the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (already they are Partnering with the IDF field hospital in Nepal to provide medical equipment, including two neonatal incubators; Working with UNICEF to secure supplies to meet children’s shelter, nutrition, water, and sanitation needs; Mobilizing a rapid assessment team of disaster experts who will arrive in Nepal this week; Collaborating with partners — among them, Tevel B’Tzedek, the All-India Disaster Mitigation Institute, and Sarvodaya — to distribute emergency relief) , the American Jewish World Service, and Americares, which has sent a response team.
Efforts are also underway from CARE. Their relief effort page is here.
Over the weekend a terrifying video emerged of the avalanche that occurred at Mt. Everest (below). The US State Department reported three US citizens killed. 150 climbers remain stranded above the avalanche but helicopters have begun rescue efforts. At least 61 were injured and many remain missing.
Nepal's Blue Diamond Society is the largest LGBT rights organization in Nepal, founded in 2001. A couple of messages have been received from a leader and a former leader (and national MP) of that organization.
I am in the [Blue Diamond Society] office since the fatal took place and have talked to many staff and there has been continuous flow of information. Some information has been shared from the districts and we are yet to receive from other. If there is any information that needs to be shared then please do so. Please keep communicating. The recent update is as follows:
The buildings of BDS donated by international and national donors are cracked in many parts; walls are almost about the fall. The ground floors of both the building are damaged and have huge cracks that can tumble at any time.
There has been severe damage of houses in Kathmandu, Lalitpur, Bhaktapur, Kavre, Sindulpalchowk and Gorkha, Tahanu, Kaski as well as in Siraaha and many community members might have lost their houses.
Due to fear, most of the community people are staying outside in the tent and have difficulties in accessing different facilities as there has been no support from outsiders. The daily wages earner has no means to sustain their livelihood. One of the community members have been out of contact since the fatal earthquake occur.
Some members have their houses damages (Gorka meti, Chari, Halasta from sakhu, Budi Meti from Sakhau Thimi in Sakhu), Kritipur, Kavrepalanchowk, Thimi Gorkha, Siraha, Lalitpur and janakpur and the information is yet to come as there is no means of communication and electricity is completely lost.
We will be updating as soon as we get into access to internet and other means of communication with electricity.
Blue Diamond Society's main building has a crack, as told by staff; they feel its not a major crack but will need repair. Blue Diamond Society's care home for HIV positive LGBTIs also has a crack and need good repair. One staff of Blue Diamond Society who works for care support centre, JYOTI PRAKASH, is missing so far.
Many TGs reported having problems of accessing toilets, has been a big problem as they spending nights in the open in Kathmandu. Three TGs from Gorkha said their houses are completely destroyed. As Gorkha and Lumjung are hardest hit districts, my ancestral home is damaged too. The current president, executive director and all other staff at BDS are ok. Phone lines and networks are non functional mostly so have not been able to reach out everyone. In Makwanpur districts also LGBTIs spending nights in the open. LGBTIs from Bhaktapur and Patan are also spending nights in the open, every TG expressed problems of accessing toilet... Food, blankets are not reaching like many others have not been reached in in Nepal. Like many women who are in need, lesbians who have to spend nights out, also finding difficulty to access toilets. I am outside of Nepal since a while, this update is through phone calls or emails with those LGBTIs in Nepal that I could get in touch. Will keep you update as I hear more. There is a need for help with relief and some rehabilitation to LGBTIs in Nepal.
In this socially conservative Hindu-majority nation, the festival was traditionally the only day people felt free to cross-dress. But social norms are changing fast as this fledgling Himalayan democracy emerges from centuries of religious monarchy.
A government committee is recommending same-sex marriage be guaranteed in a new constitution — an unprecedented move that would give gay and lesbian couples the right to adopt, buy joint property, open joint bank accounts and inherit from one another. All of the country's political parties have already backed the idea, and many within the small gay community hope the new constitution can be passed this year. [...]
"We have come a long way, but it is time we finally legalize same-sex marriage," said Monica Jha, who heads the Blue Diamond Society credited with organizing rallies and lobbying political parties for the change. The group's founder became Nepal's first openly gay legislator, while the group has also opened a travel agency for gay tourists advertising wedding and honeymoon packages on Mount Everest, the world's tallest peak.
In 2007, Nepal became the first South Asian nation to decriminalize homosexuality. Recently, however, Justice Minister Narahari Acharya announced he would seek to enact new anti-gay laws re-criminalizing homosexuality.
Nepal Justice Minister Narahari Acharya [pictured right] is seeking to enact new anti-gay laws re-criminalizing homosexuality, reports the Nepal Times.
In 2007, Nepal decriminalized homosexuality and ruled in favor of protections for the equal rights of LGBTI people. However, the law ministry is currently preparing to push anti-gay laws that will punish gay sex with three years imprisonment. The law would also prohibit same-sex unions.
When taxing citizens the government does not discriminate, but when assuring citizens of their rights, the government wants to know your gender. And if you are third gender, you cannot go to school, you cannot get a passport, you cannot get married, you cannot apply for job, you cannot join the police/army/bureaucracy, you cannot access a loan or development programs, you cannot open your business or register your property.
Addressing the proposed new anti-gay laws, Pant continues:
“This new draft provision of civil and criminal codes prepared by the Law Ministry not only defines homosexuality, but also oral and anal sex among heterosexuals, as ‘unnatural’ acts. The definition of rape is narrowed only to women.
"Many third genders are forced into heterosexual marriage, ruining both lives. Codifying such forced and heterosexualised relationships to third genders serves only to create needless suffering to our families and relatives. The notion that third gender and same-sex relationships are unnatural is absurd and wrong, as proven by our historical and religious texts. The more we exclude and isolate LGBT people, the more we hurt everyone. Because if a person has no right to go to school, no right to get jobs, cannot contribute to the economy of the country, cannot contribute to the culture, they become burden to society.
"All Nepalis who believe in equality and tolerance must raise their voices. The right to justice of all marginalised peoples is under threat from a regressive state. They are going to be excluded, marginalized, discriminated against, criminalised and demonised."
Oprah Winfrey's yard sale includes a chest of drawers worth $50,000.
Nepal held its very first gay beauty pageant
today: "The country's only openly gay lawmaker and BDS president, Sunil
Babu Pant said: 'This programme has encouraged gay men to reveal their
hidden talents and will create more awareness about gender and
The father of the man who went on a shooting spree at LAX yesterday called police about his son around the same time the shootings actually took place.
The former owner of a gay bar that was badly damaged in a fire has been charged with arson.
Bernhard Goetz has been arrested for trying to sell marijuana to an undercover NYC cop.
Two kidnapped French journalists have been killed in Mali.
Crack-smoking Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is adamant: "I'm not resigning."
A bunbled up Matt Bomer and less bundled up Simon Halls take in a movie in LA.
New law in Germany introduces a third sex option for those born with both male and female characteristics. They reason: "The council had argued, among other things, that many people born with both sex characteristics who were operated on as children say they wouldn't have consented to the surgery."